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Sun still a way from shing
Nathan Krakouer. Pic: Getty

Gold Coast have conceded defender Nathan Krakouer is still a long way from a comeback despite returning to training with Claremont.

The 23-year-old was released from his playing contract with the Suns in December last year after requesting permission to return home to Perth as he battled depression.

Krakouer was retained on Gold Coast's 2012 list in an indication they have not given up on him.

But the former Sun is understood to have made little progress in working out the issues that caused him to quit his 53-game AFL career.

The reality check was delivered yesterday as another WA recruit, Kyal Horsley, prepared for his first appearance for Gold Coast in tonight's NAB Cup round against Melbourne and Brisbane at Metricon Stadium.

Horsley, rookie-listed at 24 after winning Subiaco's best and fairest last season, has been given an immediate chance to push for upgrading on to the club's primary list for 2012.

Krakouer has been training with Claremont for the past three weeks, but remains significantly heavier than his 80kg playing weight.

Tigers football manager Dean Hors-ington said the defender had been training away from the main group.

"There's no expectations from now on in for Nathan and I don't think he's set himself any expectations yet," Horsington said.

"It's just a matter of easing into it, going slowly and just seeing where he ends up. There's no timeline."

A Gold Coast spokesman indicated Krakouer was no closer to overcoming the issues that led to his retirement.

"Our No.1 priority is his mental well being," the spokesman said.

·Former West Coast midfielder Adam Cockie has left Subiaco for St Kilda's VFL affiliate, Sandringham.

The 22-year-old is hoping to revive his AFL career close to his former WAFL coach, now Saints coach Scott Watters.

Subiaco football manager Luke Sanders said the club was very disappointed to lose a premiership player.